I really enjoy getting into my kayak on a nice stretch of calm water where there is a good possibility of seeing a variety of water birds.

For photographing birds I will be using my 300mm f/4 telephoto lens and if the water is very calm I may also use my Gitzo monopod for a little extra stability for the camera and long lens. The images in this blog have been captured on the Wooli River in Northern New South Wales. I think that any lenses much larger than the 300mm f/4 would be quite difficult to handle in the confines of a kayak.

Australian Pied Oystercatcher On The Wooli River

I have found that the best areas for water birds is generally in tidal areas when the tide is out or just starting to come in, it will give you several hours of photography at the best times. At these times the water birds will be feeding in the areas of low tide.

I find that it is possible to get up quite close to the birds if I move in very slowly with the minimal amount of body movement which may disturb the birds.

Royal Spoonbill On The Wooli River

The kayak I have been using is a Hobie Mirage Outback, it is a kayak which uses the Hobie peddle system which gives me the freedom to hold the camera with both hands whilst still peddling the kayak.

Pelican On The Wooli River

One of the biggest advantages of using the kayak I have found, is that sitting down very close to the water level it gives an excellent perspective to the images and puts the photographer at a level similar to the subjects I am trying to capture.
The equipment that I use for my photography is mainly as follows: